Global Sensemaking

Tools for Dialogue and Deliberation on Wicked Problems

Global Sensemaking is a social network


Good books/review articles on collective intelligence/social computing 2 Replies

Started by Mark Klein in Uncategorized. Last reply by Harold van Garderen May 18, 2013.

JOBS: Humantific New York: Senior Visual SenseMakers

Started by GK VanPatter in Sample Title Jan 31, 2010.

Making genuine many-to-many discussion a realistic possibility: beta testers needed 22 Replies

Started by Nicolas Holzapfel in Uncategorized. Last reply by Nicolas Holzapfel May 16, 2010.

Philosophical aspects of sensemaking and operational definitions 99 Replies

Started by George E. Mobus in Uncategorized. Last reply by George E. Mobus Jan 23, 2009.

what are the largest argument maps created to date? 8 Replies

Started by Mark Klein in Uncategorized. Last reply by Robert Parks Nov 15, 2008.



The Global Sensemaking Network?

Global Sensemaking (GSm) is a group of people dedicated to helping humanity address complex, interrelated global problems—such as climate change, energy policy, poverty, and food security—by developing and applying new web-based technology to assist collaborative decision making and cooperative problem solving.

We began to coalesce as group in the Spring of 2008, with some of us working towards something we dubbed ESSENCE as a large-scale, collective intelligence event around the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in December 2009. Climate Change continues to be a particular topic of concern, but this network is far broader in its interests.

We are from all walks of life: professors, scientists, software engineers, politicians, parents, grandparents, public health professionals, business people, students, film-makers, .... If our charter (below) appeals to you, please join us.

Mapping a Planet Under Pressure

DebateGraph is collaborating with the Planet Under Pressure 2012 conference team to weave together the arguments, evidence and policy options discussed at the conference into a coherent, dynamic knowledge map that can be shared with, and explored by, a global public audience in the build up to the UN Rio +20 conference and beyond.

You can explore the current work-in-progress in the map embedded below, and open the full map here to see the detailed underlying text, add new ideas and citations, rate the significance of the different options and arguments, zoom into specific issues and zoom out see clusters of ideas, and be alerted to changes as the content and structure of the map continue to evolve.

You can learn more about the meaning of the different colours and arrows and the different ways of looking at the map in the Help system here, and help to disseminate the ideas globally by sharing the link via social networks and embedding the map (like a YouTube video) in your own website.

This is a voluntary, collaborative endeavour to create a unique public resource at a critical time – and if you would like learn more about the process, join the mapping team (from anywhere in the world), or support or sponsor the process in any other way, please get in touch.

Open map full screen

Latest Activity

Dino Karabeg posted a blog post

Collaboration for Impact

That our core challenge now is to learn how to use the technology to re-weave our collective nervous systems will not be any news to this community. Doug Engelbart spent the three last decades of his life seeking for a community, a place in the world, a systemic pressure point, where this re-weaving could properly begin, in such a way that it might scale... And just as he was leaving us, a bit more than a year ago, this re-weaving was germinating in a community where it might be uniquely…See More
Oct 9
Robert Hammerton is now a member of Global Sensemaking
Oct 9
Jack Park posted a blog post

Experiments with collaboration platform design

I've been accumulating thoughts at am starting to craft a platform which serves as a framework for experimentation. The platform is called TQPortal, and a prototype is online (on a creaky old server at my home) here.  This is the first platform I put online that is supported by a full topic map rather than a simple…See More
Aug 28
Tom Liacas is now a member of Global Sensemaking
Aug 28

The Global Sensemaking Charter

GSm Charter (v1.0)

Mission Statement

To enhance the ability of people worldwide to collaborate on solving global wicked problems.


Humanity faces an emerging mess of global challenges (often called wicked problems) — such as, climate change, poverty, peak oil, population pressure, water shortages, declining biodiversity, and failing food supply — that are the product of patterns of thinking and behavior that no longer make sense. We need new tools of thought if we are to adapt to the scale and complexity of these challenges; tools that augment individual intelligence with the structured insights of many minds. We are building those tools.


Start making sense.


To realize our vision, we are creating a web portal, developing open source software, and fostering international standards to create a scalable, collaborative, deliberative, and global discourse environment (e.g. web-based global sensemaking platforms) for addressing the most pressing problems of our time.

* GSm Portal: a website dedicated to bridging the gap between people, organizations, and tools engaged in global sensemaking.

* GSm Software: envisioning and building the tools and glue required to enable global sensemaking.

* GSm Standards: working with international standards bodies to define a set of interfaces to support interoperability between global sensemaking tools.

Beginning as an all-volunteer group, we are open to spawning nonprofit and commercial initiatives that advance our vision. The products of our collaboration are issued under open source licenses or otherwise made freely available to all.


We adhere to the principles of appreciative inquiry and nonviolent communication—striving to enhance enhance life in word and deed.


Anyone who agrees with and upholds this charter may become, and remain, a member of the group.


We are guided at the outset by a voluntary steering committee currently consisting of: Mark Aakhus, Mark Klein, Simon Buckingham Shum, George E. Mobus, Jack Park, David Price, Andy Streich, Jeff Conklin, and Mark Szpakowski. Further volunteers are welcome.

Cohere - make connections between ideas

An introduction to the freely available Cohere software. Publish your ideas, weave webs of meaningful connections between ideas and discover new ideas and people.

A high resolution version of the video is available here, and for more Cohere videos: click here.

Introduction to the MIT Deliberatorium

George Mobus's Global Sensemaking topic map...

GSm member George Mobus posted an excellent seed topic map on the Forum here, which we have converted into Debategraph so that it's open to editing and further development by the group:





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